The report presents a preliminary study on the return to the workforce of employees with WMSDs of the upper limbs, and their reallocation to jobs with 'low exposure'. The study, which is still underway, involves a large engineering firm and includes some 100 workers affected by WMSDs. The trial envisages: providing a definition of the criteria for characterising 'accommodating' jobs (i.e. frequency of action ≤20 actions per minute; virtual absence of other risk factors such as force, posture, inadequate pauses, etc.); concretely identifying jobs meeting such criteria (or jobs which, with minimal modifications, could be made suitable); classifying WMSDs workers, according to the type and severity of the disorder; matching WMSDs workers with the jobs best suited to them; specific training for the workers and their supervisors; carrying out a follow-up of the return of WMSDs workers to the workforce in organisational terms (i.e. need for further modifications to equipment or procedures) and clinical terms (i.e. symptom patterns, acceptability of the condition). The preliminary results, 6-12 months after the start of the trial, are extremely encouraging, and show that when workers return to the workforce in jobs that fully meet defined criteria, a significant prevalence of 'improvements' are reported among the involved workers. The investigation will need to be extended, but already it shows quite convincingly that it is possible for workers with what can be described as a 'reduced working capacity' to remain 'productive' (albeit in jobs featuring a lower exposure potential than the acceptable threshold for 'healthy' workers).
|Translated title of the contribution||Criteria for the reintegration in the job of workers with musculo-skeletal disorders of the upper limbs, based on preliminary practical experience|
|Number of pages||14|
|Journal||Medicina del Lavoro|
|Publication status||Published - 1996|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health